The slum El Calvario is mainly inhabitted by garbage recollectors, homeless people, drug addicts and people largely active in the informal economy. The slum El Calvario is mainly inhabitted by garbage recollectors, homeless people, drug addicts and people largely active in the informal economy.
A young unmarried mother with her babygirl sells rummage and used clothes found in the garbage dumps along the nearby commercial district streets. A young unmarried mother with her babygirl sells rummage and used clothes found in the garbage dumps along the nearby commercial district streets.
Garbage recollectors waiting on the street of El Calvario to sell found items to the metal buyer. Garbage recollectors waiting on the street of El Calvario to sell found items to the metal buyer.
A street kid sniffing the shoe glue. The glue is the cheapest trip available in every Southamerican slum. A street kid sniffing the shoe glue. The glue is the cheapest trip available in every Southamerican slum.
Drug addicts lying on the street of El Calvario. Their motion ability has already been reduced, some of them keep in unstoppable tremor due to the brain damage caused by sniffing glue. Drug addicts lying on the street of El Calvario. Their motion ability has already been reduced, some of them keep in unstoppable tremor due to the brain damage caused by sniffing glue.
Most of the shops around the El Calvario slum is heavily protected against thievery. Slum dwellers always try to steal whatever is left without control. Most of the shops around the El Calvario slum is heavily protected against thievery. Slum dwellers always try to steal whatever is left without control.
Although Colombian Police guard some of the entrances to El Calvario they are not able to stop robberies and reselling the stolen stuff. Although Colombian Police guard some of the entrances to El Calvario they are not able to stop robberies and reselling the stolen stuff.
Many slum dwellers are obliged to pay daily for their one room accommodation in El Calvario. House owners do not live inside the slum. Many slum dwellers are obliged to pay daily for their one room accommodation in El Calvario. House owners do not live inside the slum.
The garbage recollection is the essential source of incomes for nearly all of about three thousand inhabitants of El Calvario, children included. The garbage recollection is the essential source of incomes for nearly all of about three thousand inhabitants of El Calvario, children included.
There are various missionary organizations helping in El Calvario. This aid is usually accompanied (or conditioned) by religious education. There are various missionary organizations helping in El Calvario. This aid is usually accompanied (or conditioned) by religious education.
The shoe glue is widely sold to the kids. There is no government control, neither restriction. The police can not intervene because the glue is not legally considered as a drug. The shoe glue is widely sold to the kids. There is no government control, neither restriction. The police can not intervene because the glue is not legally considered as a drug.
El Calvario is the final stop, there is usually no way back for those who fell in here. Right here, on the dirty, stinky street lies the social bottom of Cali. El Calvario is the final stop, there is usually no way back for those who fell in here. Right here, on the dirty, stinky street lies the social bottom of Cali.
El Sheriff loading his gun before entering El Calvario. El Sheriff loading his gun before entering El Calvario.

Jesus Combat

Cali, Colombia – April-May 2004

Calvario, a slum right in the centre of the city, is considered the social bottom of Cali society. Poor dwellers recollect the garbage in the near city centre to sell it for recycling, while their children get high by sniffing the shoe glue on the dirty streets of ghetto. The order in Calvario is maintained by the illegal authorities, usually former policemen or army members, who set their own rules. Criminality, drug abuse, unemployment never allow the slum people jump off the misery and stop being the second category citizen within the rigid society of Colombia. Although Christian missionary organizations attempt to provide help, the overall situation does not improve.

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